Harrity, Cerullo Lead Princeton Squash Into Individual Championships
By virtue of victories over both 2012 individual finalists in the last month, Princeton senior Todd Harrity has earned the No. 1 seed in this weekend's CSA individual championships. Both he and women's captain Julie Cerullo will lead a cast 15 Princeton squash players into this weekend's competition at Trinity College.
The CSA individual championships will be held March 1-3 at Trinity, with the majority of play to take place over the first two days. The national championship matches will take place on Sunday, with the men's final starting at 12 and the women's final starting at 1.
POOL CUP (Men's A)
Harrity, the 2011 CSA national champion, defeated Columbia's Ramit Tandon in the regular season finale to help Princeton win the 2013 Ivy League title. Tandon had defeated Harrity twice last season, including in the CSA semifinal. If form holds, those two could meet again in the semifinal round this year, as Tandon is the fourth seed.
Harrity grabbed the first seed by virtue of his 3-1 win over reigning champion and formerly unbeaten Ali Farag of Harvard in las weekend's team semifinal match. Farag, who had been 2-0 against Harrity in his career, is the second seed, and could face St. Lawrence freshman Amr Khaled Khalifa in the semifinal; Khalifa was undefeated this season, though he didn't face Harrity or Farag.
A trio of Princeton players will look to break up that semifinal duo, including sophomore All-Americas Samuel Kang and Tyler Osborne. Kang opens play with former Harvard No. 1 Gary Power, and would likely face current No. 1 Farag in the second round if he can advance. Osborne will take on Trinity No. 4 Karan Malik in the first round, and could see former All-America Chris Hanson of Dartmouth in the second round.
Junior Dylan Ward will make his Potter Cup debut with a tough match against Harvard No. 2 Brandon McLaughlin, who split a pair of matches this season with Kang. If Ward could pull the upset, he would be rewarded with a second-round match against Khalifa.
RAMSAY CUP (Women's A)
Four members of the Ivy League champion Princeton women's team are entered into the Ramsay Cup to compete for All-America honors and to see if anybody can pull a historic upset of Harvard's Amanda Sobhy.
Cerullo, a two-time semifinalist, could get that opportunity in the semifinal round once again if she can navigate through her first three matches. The three-time All-America opens play against Trinity's Robyn Hodgson, and then would face either teammate Rachel Leizman or Stanford's Kerrie Sample. Leizman has been a strong presence at the No. 4 spot this season, though she will be challenged by the No. 2 at Stanford.
On the bottom half of the draw, junior All-America Libby Eyre will open play against Penn's Pia Trikha, and could find herself in an intriguing second-round match against Stanford No. 1 Pamela Chua, who earned the Richey Award this season.
Sophomore Nicole Bunyan will take on Yale's Shihui Mao in another first-round match. Those two met in the regular season, with Mao winning a five-game marathon 12-10 in the fifth. The winner would likely get 2011 national champion Millie Tomlinson in the second round.
MOLLOY CUP (Men's B)
Princeton has three entrants into the 'B' draw, and two have received first-round byes. Freshman Vivek Donodia and sophomore David Hoffman will both have Friday morning off, and will return in the afternoon for Round of 32 matches.
The first Princeton player in competition for the Molloy Cup is freshman Michael LeBlanc, who will take on Drexel's Ibrahim Bakir. During the regular season matchup with Princeton, Bakir played No. 1 for Drexel and lost in three games to Harrity.
HOLLERAN CUP (Women's B)
The Princeton women placed four players in the 'B' draw, and each one of them received first-round byes. Juniors Alex Sawin and Lexi Saunders, sophomore Hallie Dewey and freshman Tara Harrington will all compete Friday afternoon against the winners of opening-round matches.